The Garden Party Gender Roles

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Mansfield 's "The Garden Party," is almost loosely based on her own life seeing as she grew up in an upper middle class family. The Beauchamps (Mansfield 's surname) also had three daughters and a son. The main character of the Garden party (Laura Sheridan) is a satirization of Mansfield when she was a young adult. With these parodies we see many issues of class, gender, and the way a generation is raised in this story due to Manfield 's experiences. As a character, Laura Sheridan is your typical naive, pampered and privileged child you see in an upper middle class family and can also be said for the rest of her family. Laura, her sisters, and her mother are disrespectful to anyone who is of lower class, we see this throughout the text. The possible other reason for their disrespect is that Mansfield 's stories were written in a time where the options of women were very limited.…show more content…
Independence and having a career was a rare thing for a woman to have during that time, so in a way the Sheridan women often had opportunities in exerting their class dominance so they can feel better about themselves, and what better way to do so in a party. The planning of a party is stereotypical because it is an arena where women are often used in, and in the case of the Sheridan women, one of the areas they can excel in. We also see how important this is since Laura 's mother is giving her the responsibility and possibly gaining experience in setting up a garden party. There also seems to be a struggle with gender roles pertaining to Laura when she expects men to be rough and insensitive. For example, she is surprised to see one of the workmen stop and pick some lavender and smell it. Seeing a man do this gesture is an eye-opening moment for Laura, and shows that gender roles are deeply rooted in her to the point where she questions, "How many men that she knew would have done such a thing?" (Mansfield
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